HomeAnalysisWPL 2024: What's Next for UP Warriorz After A Thrilling Win?

WPL 2024: What’s Next for UP Warriorz After A Thrilling Win?

The UP Warriorz have seen a mix of results in the Women’s Premier League 2024 (WPL 2024), with three wins and four losses in their seven games thus far. Throughout the tournament, certain players like Alyssa Healy, Deepti Sharma, Sophie Ecclestone, Grace Harris and Chamari Athapaththu have consistently delivered standout performances.

However, the team faced significant challenges when they played against the dominant Delhi Capitals and Mumbai Indians on consecutive days. These matches highlighted some notable observations about the team’s performance and dynamics. Here’s what was witnessed.

Powerplay and Middle Over Struggles

In the match versus Mumbai Indians, what stood out for UP Warriorz was the struggle to score runs in the powerplay. Chasing a daunting total of 160, it was imperative to get off to a good start. While Alyssa Healy, Kiran Navgire and Chamari Athapaththu were dismissed early on, Grace Harris took 14 balls to get off the mark but was dismissed for a 23-ball 15 which was dismal.

The powerplay saw them score just 17 runs and lose 3 wickets. Deepti Sharma also took time to settle in and was piling on the dots. Eventually, she ended up with a knock of 53 off 36 balls. The middle overs also saw the runs drying up which was taking the juice out of the T20 game.

The match versus the Delhi Capitals was no different as once again after a set Alyssa Healy fell, the going got very difficult for UP Warriorz. This time the newly promoted Deepti Sharma was constructing her knock but the loss of wickets continuously and pressure to score runs was not unknown.

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The left-handed Sharma got to a commendable 59 off 48 that was a critical knock and provided much-needed impetus as UP Warriorz pulled off a 1-run win putting pressure on Delhi Capitals while they were chasing.

Inconsistencies with selections

UP Warriorz has had a campaign where many question marks can be raised on their selections. In the match versus Mumbai Indians, we saw Uma Chetry being slotted in for Anjali Sarvani which felt like an ideal change considering they wanted to deepen their batting reserves and having the young wicketkeeper batter would give much-needed stability.

But in the very next match against Delhi Capitals, in what can be considered a bizarre move- Gouher Sultana made it in for Uma Chetry. With UP Warriorz already boasting a more than formidable spin bowling department was the inclusion of Sultana needed? Uma Chetry was dropped after just one game which would not augur well for the youngster who is making her inroads. To make matters worse, an out-of-form Tahlia McGrath replaced Chamari Athapaththu for the DC encounter which again did not make sense.

UP Warriorz pulled off a heist in their last match [Image: Getty]
UP Warriorz pulled off a heist in their last match [Image: Getty]
TMac for all her all-round prowess has been far from good this season and with Chamari chipping in with the ball at least getting wickets, the move did not appeal to experts and fans. The probable understanding or rationale could be that TMac could have been added to the playing 11 to add bite to the pace bowling department and lend support to Saima Thakor.

The match however unfolded with TMac being used for 2 overs going for 19 runs and no contributions from the bat. Although UP Warriorz went on to win the match by a margin of one run, the replacement did not entirely add up to anything. That is where Alyssa Healy’s captaincy has come under the scanner.

Dependence on the stalwarts to come strong in WPL 2024

UP Warriorz like many other teams depends heavily on their experienced and talented star players to come to the fore and deliver. This season has seen relatively lukewarm outings for the likes of skipper Alyssa Healy, Tahlia McGrath, the new entrant Chamari Athapaththu and Grace Harris who have all blown hot and cold.

Deepti Sharma and Sophie Ecclestone have been in pristine form. UP Warriorz would have ideally wanted them to contribute more and lead the way for victories but with one more game to go, can they get all their stars to put in one last hurrah?

Struggles in the bowling department

In the absence of Lauren Bell, UP Warriorz has lacked an express pace option. Saima Thakor who was slotted in has not been used to the best of her capabilities in the right phases of the game. Nonetheless, the Mumbai pacer has delivered and in the matches versus MI and DC, she shone.

Rajeshwari Gayakwad has been in a bad vein of form and Sophie Ecclestone and Deepti Sharma have been good. Gouher Sultana has had average returns. Grace Harris has been instrumental in a lot of games and so has Chamari Athapaththu. The non-usage of Parshavi Chopra throughout the season has bamboozled everyone.

The struggles in the bowling department have been apparent and through the whole season, we have seen cracks emerge.

What next for UP Warriorz in WPL 2024?

With one match remaining against the Gujarat Giants, the UP Warriorz have a chance to secure a win and potentially qualify for the playoffs. Whether they can achieve this and make their playoff aspirations a reality remains to be seen.

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